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Politics could drive 2019 congressional action on rural health

November 21, 2018 / Harris Meyer

In the wake of the polarizing midterm elections this month, advocates hope that House Democrats and Senate Republicans see strengthening rural healthcare access as a prime area for bipartisan action in Congress next year.They say moves to shore up financially struggling rural hospitals and offer communities alternative payment and delivery models could be smart politics for both parties, as well as for President Donald Trump, heading into the 2020 elections. Several bipartisan rural health bills in the Senate and House went nowhere this year, despite the steadily rising number of rural hospital closures.